no matter whatI watched “Draft Day” last night, with Kevin Costner in the lead role as  Sunny, manager of the Cleveland Browns, and was intrigued about a mystery note that he wrote at the start of the movie…more about that later.

As the film evolves, Sunny’s decisions about the draft enrage the whole town–they picket outside his office waving  signs saying “Fire Sunny”, and the coach threatens to quit.

But he keeps making hard and ridiculed choices…particularly his passing up of the ostensible star quarterback, Bo.

At the very end, we see the note — “Pick Vonte (instead of Bo) no matter what”

Well, his strategy pays off and the movie ends with everyone loving him.  But it won’t last…so he has to keep following his own plans and listening to his inner voice, NO MATTER WHAT…

no matter that he feels all is lost

no matter who thinks he’s crazy

no matter who hates him

And WHY do I play jazz guitar NO MATTER WHAT?  No matter whether I have gigs or not, whether my teacher all but gives up on me, no matter that it takes hours, weeks,  months even,  just to acquire basic knowledge and skill necessary for the simplest of jazz tunes…

…no matter that anyone who hears me play right now would most likely think me a deluded middle-aged nut case, making a lame attempt to regain the shimmer of a lost youth.

Because sometimes, in that rare flicker of an instant, I feel and see me in the zone, playing with a style and grace.

Because I honor the pure part of me that loves music, that becomes breathless upon hearing a great player and yearns to make similar sounds come from my instrument, via my heart and soul.

Because I want the daily experience of “pure potentiality”  in which I sometimes dwell, where-in resides  a  good musician, one that is ego-less, fully present in the sound and meaning of music.

Because playing good jazz, even just learning to play, demands that the continual din of voices in my head, chattering and moaning about either the past or the future, cease and desist.

Because it feels great to live in the moment, without those dinny voices…when they stop, the suffering stops. No regrets of the past or worries about he future.

Because if I don’t do this, I will be dead inside, having no dream, no purpose, no vehicle on which to do my part of making the world a better place.

Whatever you are doing, figure out which part of it you will do no matter what, so you’ll be ready when the naysayer in your head or the other nay sayers try to show you how ridiculous what you are doing is.

Now, enjoy Stanley Jordan,

…note how he is like a child digging the music, no judgement., just pure play jazz you must be “a little child” to quote my teacher.  Today I  will be a little child no matter what

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